And at 34, Robert Lewandowski continues to write his glittering history in European football after scoring a hat-trick against Victoria Pilsen in Barcelona’s 5-1 win last night.
The goal flair of the Polish striker has not surprised anyone for a long time, but it has brought him record after record.
When we talk about excellence in the category of “goals” usually the names of Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi pop up at the top of the charts – the two who have been competing to break records in the Champions League for over a decade now.
When we talk about a hat-trick in the Champions League, here too, these two are at the top. Cristiano and Leo each have eight goals in the tournament.
But as of last night, Lewandowski can boast three goals in one game for three different teams – something still unachieved by two of modern football’s biggest superstars.
The Pole has hat-tricks for Borussia Dortmund, Bayern Munich and Barcelona in Europe’s most prestigious club tournament, scoring at least three times in one game in total six times.
His first hat-trick came for the “yellow and black” in 2013 in the big 4-1 victory over Real Madrid in the eliminations. He then scored four hat-tricks for Bayern – against Dinamo Zagreb (2015), against Red Star (2019), against Benfica (2021) and against RB Salzburg (2022).
The one against Viktoria Pilsen makes him unattainable in terms of the variety of teams he has scored them for.
Hattricks for two different teams in the Champions League are Cristiano Ronaldo (Real Madrid and Juventus), Neymar (Barcelona and PSG), Olivier Giroud (Arsenal and Chelsea), Michael Owen (Liverpool and Manchester United), Didier Drogba (Marseille and Chelsea), Andriy Shevchenko (Dynamo Kyiv and Milan), Ruud van Nistelrooy (PSV and Manchester United), Roy Mackay (Deportivo La Coruña and Bayern), Marco Simone (Milan and Monaco) and Filippo Inzaghi (Juventus and Milan).
The closest to joining Lewandowski is Olivier Giroud, who currently plays for Milan. Neymar continues to play for PSG, for whom he already has a hat-trick in the Champions League, while Ronaldo is at Manchester United, who are currently out of the tournament.